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Spanish Police Detain Three for Illegally Trafficking Workers from Maghreb to Agricultural Farms


Three individuals involved in a scheme to recruit individuals from the Maghreb region have recently been arrested by the Spanish Police.

Following the “Cone” operation carried out by the Civil Guard, it was also discovered that these recruits were then brought to Spain through a network that operated mainly within agricultural farms, SchengenVisaInfo reports.

In a press release on April 5, Spain’s Ministry of Interior pointed out that this illegal network facilitated the entry of approximately one hundred individuals from Morocco to Spain. It explains that these individuals were allegedly charged a high fee ranging from €14,000 to €16,000.

Spanish Ministry Uncovers Fraudulent Worker Recruitment Million-Euro Scheme

According to the Ministry, the scheme involved obtaining certificates that allowed companies to hire foreign workers from their countries of origin. In addition, these workers were promised jobs and temporary work and residence permits with pay. The suspects are said to have won about one million euros from over 100 victims.

The companies presented the job offers as jobs that were difficult to fill with very specific conditions, which made it difficult to find workers with this training among the personnel seeking employment in the agricultural sector in the province of Toledo.

Spain’s Ministry of Interior

Ministry further added that many victims have been left without the promised permits, leaving them vulnerable or in debt from the payment requested in advance. Investigators collected complaints and statements from victims, confirming suspicions and uncovering the suspects’ methods. The investigation continues, with the possibility of further arrests.

Spanish Police Detain 23 in Document Fraud Case in March

A similar case occurred last month also where 23 people, aged between 20 and 50, were arrested by the Spanish National Police. These workers were found to be in an irregular situation, using forged documents and stolen identities.

The arrested individuals were primarily from Ecuador, Senegal, Paraguay, Morocco, Gambia, Burkina Faso, and Spain. Among them, four are suspected of orchestrating the exploitation of irregular workers, falsely presenting them as legal employees in Spain to evade official scrutiny.

Moreover, the investigation was initiated following a complaint lodged by a foreign individual who claimed to be registered in a company where they never worked.

In August 2023, Spanish authorities also dismantled two criminal groups exploiting foreign workers in agriculture and construction. In one case, in Cuenca, 40 workers were discovered crammed into a warehouse, enduring unacceptable living conditions.

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